Soldier Hailed as Hero at El Paso Arrested for Going AWOL
PFC Glendon Oakley, the soldier hailed as a hero for his actions during the El Paso shooting on August 3, was arrested last Thursday in Texas. He even received a commendation medal. But all may not be what it seemed at the time. He was arrested for going AWOL, according to the Military Times.
Oakley was arrested by Harker Heights Police Department on October 3 from a warrant issued by the Army. Harker Heights is about 600 miles east of Fort Bliss.
We received a note from an anonymous person at Fort Bliss that something was wrong with Oakley’s story, and that CID had launched an investigation. Police also stated that they were unable to verify the report that Oakley “gathered up children” during the shooting, and disputed his account of what occurred, according to CBS local.
The person who contacted us also said that Oakley is a ‘local joke’ in El Paso, and that he has a derogatory nickname among a few of the troops. Which in and of itself could be the very reason for the story he told during the shooting.
But the investigation into his actions also may have spurred him going AWOL. He is still in custody in Bell County pending return to Fort Bliss, “where the chain of command is prepared to receive the soldier and address the issue according to applicable laws, regulation, and the Uniform Code of Military Justice.”
We previously reported his actions based on reports from news media:
“Pvt. 1st Class Glendon Oakley Jr was at the Footlocker in the Cielo Vista Mall when a “little kid” walked into the store to tell the people about an active shooter. Oakley at first didn’t believe him, but as soon as he heard the pop pop pop of the gun shots, he drew his gun, lifted the gate of the Footlocker, and headed for the parking lot. But he saw so many children without parents that he gathered up as many as possible.
“I’m in the military, so when I hear gunshots, I just think ‘take cover.’ But I was so worried about those kids…I saw a whole bunch of kids running around without their parents … I tried to pick up as many as I could and bring them with me.” Glendon Oakley Jr
As it turns out, that may not have been the case after all.
Featured photo of Oakley’s medal ceremony via US Army